VulcanVerse has incredibly rich and growing lore. With heavyweight Fighting Fantasy authors Jamie Thomson and Dave Morris — known also for the legendary Fabled Lands series at the helm, you’d be right to have raised expectations for the fantasy background being drawn up for this blockchain gaming newcomer.
So, where to start? At the beginning.
The old Greco-Roman gods are fading from memory.. people worship science and devote their time to digital pastimes, video games, social media. But not all gods will fall silently into a deep slumber. Vulcan, the Roman god of fire (whose Greek incarnation is Hephaestus), vowed to use science to forge a new, virtual world worthy of the gods:
I will embrace their new myths, their invisible worlds, their gods who speak in code of webs and nets and chains. I will forge a world that will be greater than the mundane ambitions of you mere mortals!
I will use your science to create a virtual world born of a God, a world beyond the fickle, ephemeral dreams of mankind.
I, Vulcan, will create a new Olympus!
With a project as big as VulcanVerse, the lore has to be both all encompassing and sound — something that the authors with their combined years of experience writing AAA fantasy and choose your own adventure books will guarantee. To get a real feel for the world that they are crafting, the first port of call has to be the excellent VulcanVerse map. An island, split into very different quadrants, is where all of the action happens.
Vulcan has forged this virtual world for human inhabitants. Based on the same Greco-Roman lore that Vulcan himself hails from, the land itself comes with tantalizing clues as to its nature and what lies in store for its inhabitants. Take a close look and amongst the ruins, you might find the image of a howling wolf… or scorpions amongst desert sand dunes. Gaze further and you might see a Cyclops atop a snowy mountaintop. VulcanVerse takes from the Greek and Roman mythology and religions of old and brings this world firmly into the digital age — cementing the likes of Aelio, Storm-Swift Queen of the Harpies, into blockchain immortality as a non-fungible token (NFT), a collectible with matching in-world 3D character to accompany the player on their quest.
The four areas of VulcanVerse are distinct. To the north west are the Mountains of Boreas, an ice-bound plateau surrounded by mountains, creating seclusion from the other areas of VulcanVerse. Named after Boreas, God of the North Wind and of Winter, here dwell Amazons, tribes of warrior women, now small in number scraping out an existence on the tundra. Minotaurs can be found in subterranean caves and tunnels, Harpies and Hippogriffs fight it out for control of mountain peaks and in Boreas the Cyclops can be still be found, hurling boulders at each other.
Herds of Mammoth roam the steppe, though greatly reduced in number today. Small herds of wild horses, descendants of those ridden by the Amazons, run on the steppe — sometimes prey to the small number of Sabre-tooths that can be found here.
To the east of the Mountains of Boreas lie the Gardens of Arcadia, the Garden of the Gods of Olympus. Once beautiful and full of life, Arcadia has fallen on hard times — it stands neglected, weed-choked and overgrown. The west of Arcadia is dominated by the Deep Forest, which runs from coastal areas in the north to the walls of Vulcan City in the southwest. The River of Arcadia flows through a valley just north of the Summer Palace and winds north to meet the sea. To the east of the river in the uplands is the ancient Druid’s Shrine and beyond, near Arcadia’s east coast, are the Verdant Farmlands. Wolves chase deer in the forests and centaurs can still, occasionally, be seen.
Ambrosia, the food of the gods that imparts immortality on those who eat of it, was also harvested here from the mushroomed shadows of glen and glade. Yet a few Dryads still live in leaf-thatched tree houses, some nymphs still dance in sunlit glades and gambol in the streams and pools.
Directly south of the Gardens of Arcadia can be found the Desert of Notus. In stark contrast to Arcadia’s lush green grasses, woodland, and sudden storms, Notus is dry, baked by the strong sun. The desert is dominated by three large Pyramid Mausoleums that can be seen from beyond the borders of Notus. To the far south, the once Great River drains into the sea and at its delta can be found the ancient city of Iskandria. To the west, the desert borders the Underworld of Hades, with the Dunes of Doom separating the main expanse of the desert from the Land From Which No-One Returns.
The once Great River has now dried up, the huge water wheels at the Cataract of Tethys sit, rusting, their wooden spokes sun-bleached and brittle.
To the southwest of VulcanVerse is the Underworld of Hades. A truly hellish landscape awaits — red skies and blood rain, swamps, cemeteries, and mausoleums. The defining features of this land of the dead are the three rivers that carve up the land: the River Styx, the River Acheron, and the River Hades (or, Black Bayou as it is also known). Here, in Hades, can be found one of the most imposing landmarks; the towering Palace of the Dead.
This land is one of fire, lava, stagnant swamps, ash, and rivers.
Away from the rivers of hell lie the Plains of Howling Darkness, home to lost souls, wandering in the miasmic shadows, who wail and groan, shambling aimlessly, lamenting their fate in the pale, decaying light.
Vampiric Lamias lurk in crypts and caverns, Strix, bloodthirsty bat-like birds with razor-sharp bills of bronze fly overhead.
Central to VulcanVerse is the splendid walled Vulcan City, where the quadrants meet, populated by automatons and with halls representing each quadrant.
Vulcanites, in-world companions for VulcanVerse and characters in their own right, usable in other Vulcan Forged ecosystem games, also have their own background and each belongs to a certain quadrant.
Velosina, for example, is a centaur from the Gardens of Arcadia. She is a keen huntress, excellent with a bow and arrow — but also a skilled musician, playing melodies on her bone flute at many an occasion.
Another is Blubberjaw, a hideous demon of the Underworld of Hades, nourished by the corpses of the damned, those who were gluttonous and greedy in life. Blubberjaw awaits them in the firey River Phlegethon, drawn to the fat, buttery flesh of the greedy.
Each Vulcanite comes with beautiful artwork, further building that image of a full, living world.
To add to the lore, the authors are also working on a series of gamebooks, set in each of the quadrants. These physical books will be in the ‘choose your own adventure’ style and will tie into the VulcanVerse game, with the first book scheduled for release this year.
Create your own lore
A real draw to many will be the ability to create and build on your own lore whilst in world, with the official VulcanVerse lore as the main layer, there is nothing stopping users from adding their own stories and histories on top of the existing rich background. Players have been coming up with interesting backstories for their ‘in world’ character, which can be built upon. With third-party websites, such as a VulcanVerse wiki, every event can be documented, further developing the VulcanVerse history.
With this rich lore and backstory, VulcanVerse is ready for an eventful future.
OFFICIAL GAMEBOOKS RELEASE
Vulcan can confirm the first two gamebooks (of 5) written by
@fightingfantasy authors Dave Morris and Jamie Thomson will be released 1st September 2021 in bookstores in UK, Italy, Germany, France, and Amazon!
This world is quickly expanding, with lots of information to be processed, here are some links to help you along your journey
2. Vulcan Forged
4. Real-time blockchain map
5. Vulcanites page
6. PYR Whitepaper
7. Vulcanverse Discord